ILOILO City, Philippines— A last-minute deal between the water distributor for Iloilo City and several neighboring Iloilo province towns and a bulk water supplier staved off a planned rotational water schedule and interruption set to start on Monday, May 16.
The Metro Iloilo Water District (MIWD) and its joint venture partner, Metro Pacific Iloilo Water (MPIW), in a press release on Monday, announced the last-minute provisional deal to extend the existing 10-year agreement with FLO Water Resources.
The deal would ease water concerns of 20,000 consumers in all seven districts of Iloilo City and the neighboring towns of Leganes, Pavia, and Santa Barbara. But comes with a rise in water rates, as the distributor and its bulk provider agreed on a basic rate of P21 per cubic meter.
How this will translate to water distribution charges on the ground remains to be seen.
The agreement expired on Sunday evening, May 15. The new deal was reached during a Sunday meeting that also included Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas and Iloilo Governor Arthur Defensor Jr.
“MPIW and FLO Water Resources (Iloilo), Inc. have already entered into a six (6) months provisional agreement to extend FLO Water’s supply of bulk water to MPIW for twenty-one (Php 21) pesos per cubic meter beyond its May 15, 2022 contract expiration under mutually agreed terms and conditions,” the press release said.
Treñas in his regular press conference on Monday said that he and Defensor were worried about a potential crisis in Iloilo’s metropolitan area if residents faced a water shortage amid summer’s blistering heat.
“[Defensor] and I were both worried because we cannot afford to have water interruption in Iloilo City, especially in this hot climate and when we need water most,” the mayor stated.
The MIWD and MPIW announced the planned schedule of water connection interruptions last Thursday, May 12, citing FLO Water’s notice to them that it would cease to supply water due to the end of their agreement.
They cited FLO Water’s desire to renew the contract at Php25 per cubic meter, higher than the current approved selling rate of Php11.72 per cubic meter.
MPIW is 80% owned by Metro Pacific Water and 20% by the MWID. – Rappler.com
Joseph B.A. Marzan is a Visayas-based journalist and is a recipient of the Aries Rufo Journalism Fellowship.